I remember well the days I spent on trading floors around the globe talking with traders about how they were using the technology we had provided them with. While traders couldn’t easily express their requirements in terms of workflow automation, after many conversations it became clear this was what they were after. I always anticipated their frustration when I responded to their requests, just like the child who asks their parents “Why can’t I have ice cream and a bag of sweets?” and the answer “just because” led to dissatisfaction.
These conversations usually went something like this:
Trader: I want to click in here and bring this up over here. I want to pull this data from here and send it to that system. I want to see these data values in my order blotter. I want to link these two windows. Can you do that? Can you integrate system X with application Y?
Me: Yes, but…
The ‘Yes, but…’ was usually followed by a number of different responses:
- It’s not as simple as it might look. This will require back-end and front-end changes which will take time. (Lengthy IT systems integration project)
- I’ll have to add it to the product backlog and then we will look to prioritize but it’s likely to be at least a few months or longer. (Needs to go to the back of the queue, may never get prioritized – high effort, low value)
- We need to wait until system X has been upgraded. They said we should get a release at the end of the year. (Dependency on vendor for software release)
- We can’t do it the way you want but how about I show you what we could do. (You need to bend your business processes to fit with the technology)
It was always about managing expectations and preparing the traders for the worst-case scenario. Of course, there was always a small number of requests that could be pushed through quickly and in the way that the traders wanted. When that happened it was a win-win for the business and technology – rare but happy days all around.
The importance of business needs
As technologies have evolved, the focus has switched. Rather than the business having to bend its process around the technology and its limitations, the technology now flexes with the business – putting trader needs at the forefront and in turn, simplifying systems integration and eliminating swivel-chair workflows. This has been a major cultural shift and has seen waterfall methodologies and lengthy IT projects replaced with agile methodologies and new ways to integrate applications. The traditional build vs. buy debate is now becoming buy, build and blend. This has led to rapid innovation on the trading floor. Firms can remain competitive, achieve better operational control over their businesses and manage costs better.
Speed up systems integration and get the ROI now
The question for many embarking on digital transformation journeys is knowing where to start. The beauty of interop.io is that we recognize there are many roads to digital transformation, so why not take a “multi-path” approach? This allows firms to supplement and eventually replace legacy platforms incrementally without turning the lights off. In turn, this lets traders have their ice cream and their sweets.
interop.io provides a “bottom-up” approach to digital transformation, supported with world-class technology and real-world experience in our team of technologists, thought leaders, and capital markets professionals. In addition, we provide out-of-the-box adapters between popular applications found on the trader’s desktop (Bloomberg, Fidessa, Excel, Salesforce, etc.). Additionally, everything we do is supported by standards such as FDC3, so firms are free to bring in other interop technologies as needed.
By solving one business problem at a time, we enable firms to deliver solutions to their trading desks without large budgets and at lightning speed; in a matter of days rather than months.
What is interop.io?
interop.io is a business solution that allows firms to create highly intuitive workflows and workspaces where data is tracked and synchronized in real-time between applications of any kind – web, native, in-house or third-party. For sell-side firms, this means traders (and salespeople) can increase the speed and quality of client service and order execution, maximize internalization, and better exploit their market knowledge.
interop.io can help sell-side firms with:
- One-click access to market intelligence by syncing ticker information between applications
- One-click synchronization across applications on quotes, pricing, analytics and news for idea generation, faster decision making and best execution
- At the point of order receipt or execution, the ability to click on an order/basket and get pre-trade TCA or relevant analytics for that order/basket in the trader’s analytics platform of choice
- One-click access to client profile, holdings, interests, past orders and more to know who to call and why
- Personalized and targeted client conversations
- Streamlined workflows between sales, trading, research, and the back office, increasing order crossing, reducing time to resolve trade breaks, and other multi-person activities
- The quickest path to ROI through workflow automation.
How does interop.io work in practice?
Let’s take a simple example. I’m an execution trader with a trading ecosystem that comprises various applications including an OEMS, market data terminal, TCA, analytics, chat, Excel and more. I must stay on top of market dynamics and liquidity, act quickly on massive amounts of information to accurately and profitably make markets. However, critical information like order details, TCA, client profiles and market intelligence often sit in multiple, disconnected applications so I’m constantly having to do ‘swivel-chair, up-down workflows’ to type the same data into different applications in order to build a helicopter view of a trading opportunity. By doing this, I have already missed prices and volume and have created operational risk by potentially inputting the wrong data. This is a serious business problem on multiple fronts. To stay ahead in today’s high-volume, high-volatility environment, streamlining sell-side workflows is essential.
What does interop.io do for me?
I implement an interop.io workflow solution that provides single-click stock synchronization between my applications, eliminates my swivel-chair workflows, and builds that helicopter view that empowers me to react faster and turn my best execution obligations into valuable execution consulting. For instance, check out this Fidessa-Bloomberg Terminal solution video.
Where can I get more details?
Visit interop.io to get more details. Contact us with your business requirements and get a free assessment.